Short Film Watch - Tidy Monster And The New Blomkamp Short

It's been a while since we last did this (which is funny because it always seems a while since we last did this post: someone needs to get us a calendar) but this week saw us watching two short films which deserved the resurrection of Short Film Watch.

First up was an untitled short (or trailer) from Neill Blomkamp, director of the Oscar-nominated District 9, which found its way into the ipad edition of Wired magazine and thus onto the hallowed servers of YouTube. The film doesn't tell us much and ends abruptly but it shows what you can do with a phone camera and a couple of actors who can read dialogue without sounding like poor ventriloquists. Its minimal one-minute runtime is laced with tension and, like every good trailer, it leaves you intrigued and wanting more.

Next was Tidy Monster, a suggestion from a reader who had seen our post on Granny O'Grimm's Sleeping Beauty from last year's Animated Short Oscar race. Like Blomkamp's short, this again shows how you can do a lot with very little. A visual interpretation of poem-like dialogue, the film focuses on a increasingly distorted room for the entire five minutes and can be interpreted in multiple ways: perhaps most obviously as a metaphor for a fracturing domestic situation. With four-hundred thousand hits on YouTube, it's fair to say that its captured the imagination of more than a couple of people and, along with the first film, serves as a lesson to film makers on how to capture an audience and tell a simple story with little resource.

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